“Cherry Bomb” by The Runaways

Those who are familiar with fireworks may recognize the term cherry bomb as referring to a small yet powerful firecracker which is shaped like a cherry. And you can say that the narrator is explosive in her own regards. Or more to the point, lead singer Cherie Curry, who was only 16 when this song was dropped, is presenting herself as a young lady who is not afraid to live life as she sees fit. Even more specifically, she depicts herself as someone who is promiscuous. And she calls on other women to behave likewise, not only in the name of making themselves happy but also to liven up depressed guys whom they may like. 

And even though she does not forthrightly reveal her age in the song, the implication is that the singer is pretty young, considering that she addresses her mother and father in the chorus. Indeed the title of this song is based on her exclaiming that she is their “cherry bomb”.  And it is clear from the first verse that she has an issue with authority figures. Or as she also puts it in the chorus, she is a “wild girl”, which is the idea the title is ultimately meant to allude to. 

So conclusively, this song is about a girl whom we can say is too much for her parents to handle.

“I’m your ch-ch-ch-ch-cherry bomb!”

Facts about “Cherry Bomb”

You may have noticed that in addition to this song being entitled “Cherry Bomb”, the lead singer’s first name is also Cherie. This is more than a coincidence. For as the story goes, the Runaways’ Joan Jett and the band’s manager (and this track’s producer), Kim Fowley (1935-2015), wrote this song specifically to be sung by Cherie Curry.

This track ended up being The Runaways’ most successful hit, as in their signature song.  For instance, it charted in the US, Australia and Japan. And more recently it was prominently featured on the hit MCU film, “Guardians of the Galaxy” (2014). And prior to that, in 2009, VH1 placed it at number 52 on their list of the “100 Greatest Hard Rock Songs”.

“Cherry Bomb” was released by Mercury Records on June 1st, 1976. And it can be found on The Runaways’ self-titled debut album.

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